News
Greenlight Assets Protection Module is on-line to the public - January 2013 E-VIS Tianjin Office

In January 2013, Hobsons Bay City Council has expanded on its Greenlight Planning, Building and Parking Permit Modules to allow applicants to lodge and track applications for:

  • Road opening/occupation
  • Vehicle crossings
  • Skip bin permits

The system aims to embrace on-line benefits of lodgment, information transfer and payments to provide a higher level of customer service for residents and applicants of the Council.

These permits are required as part of the Council's Local Law

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E-VIS opens office in Tianjin China - May 2012 E-VIS Tianjin Office

E-VIS is proud to announce the opening of our China office. Located in the Tianjin Hi-tech Industry Park, in the heart of Tianjin.

China has a large pool of IT professionals. There are 5.8 million annual graduates in 2010, fuelled by government investment in education. The operating cost in tier-one cities (e.g., Beijing and Tianjin) is 60 to 70 percent cheaper than U.S. and European countries. Sound Infrastructure investments in power, transportation and high-speed broadband network, national level supporting funds bolstered by provincial and city government incentives and stable political environment makes China, especially Tianjin an ideal city for IT outsourcing.

Our team brings a unique combination of knowledge and passion to address the challenges and opportunities that are presented by our clients.

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Hobsons Bay City Council go online with Greenlight Parking Permit Module - November 2011

Hobsons Bay City Council introduced the Greenlight Parking Permit Module in 2011 for faster and easier access to obtaining or renewing parking permits.

The new system is a cleaner, greener way of issuing parking permits. Its features include online lodgement of permit applications and uploading of supporting documents.

Hobsons Bay City Council expects to issue 25000 parking permits to its residents in 2012.

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Greenlight Assets Protection Module is implemented at Hobsons Bay City Council - July 2011

Excerpts from Hobsons Bay City Council Media Release:

"Stemming from its Greenlight Planning and Building Modules, Hobsons Bay City Council and its software vendor, E-vis is happy to announce the creation of the Greenlight Assets Protection Manager. This system records and administers the road opening, vehicle crossing and skip bin permit applications as well as the enforcement arm of the City Cleansing and Maintenance Department. As with the other modules, the system embraces on-line benefits of lodgement and payment using web based systems as well as automated template and letter creation. The system can also be accessed ‘on the go’ which is of great benefit to our officers given their busy inspection schedule. It is anticipated that this system will create many time and money saving benefits not only for the Council but also the Hobsons Bay City Council Customer."

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DocBureau 3.0 is VERS Certified - July 2010

E-VIS is proud to announce its document management team has taken DocBureau 3.0 to a new level. DocBureau is now fully certified for compliance with VERS PROS 99/007 Version 2 Specifications 1-5. Public Record Office Victoria (PROV) developed VERS gives direction in the management of digital records. It is generally accepted and used by archival institutions, national and international Governments. < /p>

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Greenlight For Moorabool Shire Council - September 2008

Moorabool Shire Council successfully went 'Live' with Greenlight OPM. Sub-Division and Planning permits are now processed and issued through Greenlight OPM. E-VIS would like to congratulate and thank Moorabool Shire Council staff for a swift and successful implementation and look forward to working with Council on other projects.

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Council Launches Innovative Online Building Tool - Wednesday, 18th June 2008

Martin Pakula MLC Member for Western Metropolitan launched Greenlight Building today, Hobsons Bay City Council’s revolutionary online building permit management system.

Greenlight Building is an extension of Greenlight Planning, launched by the Council in liaison with software development company E-VIS Pty Ltd in 2004

The Mayor of Hobsons Bay Councillor Bill Baarini said the Greenlight software provides an innovative way for the Council to process planning and building applications.

“Hobsons Bay City Council is leading the way with the creation and use of Greenlight Building,” said Cr Baarini.

“The new system manages building applications online, allowing residents and builders to submit applications, request advice, pay for applications, receive correspondence and monitor the status of their applications 24/7.

“Conveniently it removes the need for residents and builders to come into the Council offices during work hours.

“Greenlight Building has been designed to reduce the amount of time spent processing applications, and will increase productivity, cost effectiveness and reliability.

“It allows building officers to focus their time on assessing applications, and less on administration, maximising the use of both the planner and submitter’s time.”

Designed collaboratively by Hobsons Bay City Council and E-VIS Pty Ltd, Greenlight Building is specifically tailored for local government.

Cr Baarini said since the launch of Greenlight Planning in 2004, the planning system has become more transparent, streamlined and accessible.

“Greenlight Planning has significantly improved the turnover for applications, with the average time spent processing applications dropping significantly.

“Greenlight Building is expected to do the same, and we hope that other Councils follow in our footsteps to provide a system with huge benefits to the Council and community.

The software will be accessible for submissions through the Council website www.hobsonsbay.vic.gov.au from 19th June 2008

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e-Government Award 2007

The Emergency Service Telecommunications Authority (ESTA) received a High Commendation for the E-VIS developed Media Access to Emergency Services (MATES) portal at the 2007 e-Government Award Ceremony. MATES is a first of it's kind system through which the media can access emergency services records via a single web portal. The success of MATES follows another E-VIS accolade at the 2006 e-Government awards for Greenlight Online Permit Manager.

Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority, Victoria - Media Access to Emergency Services (MATES)

Emergency services telecommunications are a vital link in the chain between the public and its emergency services organisations. With this in mind, the Victorian Government established the Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority (ESTA) to manage and provide vital emergency services telecommunications to the state. This is done via a highly sophisticated network linking the essential operations of emergency services career and volunteer workers in the field.

ESTA is responsible for emergency telecommunications, including call-taking and dispatch and related information transfer services for emergency services. The establishment of ESTA has allowed the emergency communications network to be progressively extended to other agencies as the need arises.

What is MATES?

The Media Access to Emergency Services (MATES) system is the solution developed by ESTA and E-VIS Pty Ltd to meet the needs of the Victorian police and other Victorian emergency service organisations. The MATES system instantaneously presents information about emergencies to the media via a web portal, automatically taking privacy and police operational requirements into consideration.

The MATES system ensures that emergency service organisations can provide the media with speedy and consistent information to ensure public safety in emergencies. In this context, ESTA is one of the few agencies in the world that delivers a multi-agency emergency communications service to police, fire services, ambulance and the Victorian State Emergency Service.

Features of MATES

The MATES system is unique in the way it delivers information from calls received through Triple Zero to the media via a web portal. This information can be provided instantaneously to media organisations, and alerts can be configured to ensure the media are automatically notified of public interest events.

Some Triple Zero events are provided directly to the media in real time, while the system automatically holds other events for a specified time. Information about emergencies can also be released only once a specific activity occurs, for example, once the police have been notified of an emergency or they arrive at the scene of the emergency. This is all managed automatically within the MATES system. Information can also be released or withdrawn manually if emergency service organisations want to do so.

One of the most useful features of the MATES system is the ability for emergency service organisations to add more information about an incident to help the media and reduce the number of enquiries to their media units.

An important feature of the MATES system is that all information is put through a privacy filter and has business rules applied to ensure emergency service operational activities are not compromised. Under no circumstances is any Triple Zero caller information given to the media. The filtering of information via the MATES system is based on a set of predetermined rules that are applied to different event types and emergency service operational requirements. Once the rules have been applied, the media can access the information through a secure website.

Accessibility and usability of MATES

ESTA and E-VIS Pty Ltd worked closely with the media and Victoria Police when developing the MATES system. This resulted in a system with a number of features that help the media access information and present it in a tailor-made format to suit individual needs. The system is also housed in a data centre, ensuring that it is available even when demand is high.

ESTA is the first agency in Australia that has been able to provide a web portal to media organisations as a replacement for emergency service radio scanning devices. The media have not been able to use these devices to access emergency services information since the introduction of encrypted radio.

Outcomes for government, the media and community

The media is a mobile industry, with information required anywhere at anytime. From an industry viewpoint, the MATES system means that the media can access information from a secure web portal anywhere at any time and from any location, which is a significant improvement on previous systems. The media no longer have to rely on outdated scanning devices, which were not a viable tool for monitoring police and other emergency service radio communications once encrypted radio was introduced.

The media can see all activity in a user-friendly format and can create their own profiles and filter information to see only what they want. Further, they do not have to listen to scanners and try to pick up what is relevant as information is delivered to their desktop.

From the perspective of emergency service organisations, they can set up alerts so they are aware of particular events occurring. They can also add commentary to each event, which helps to reduce enquiries.

And most importantly in this entire process, the community’s privacy is protected.

Future directions for MATES

The MATES system is a benchmark for other states looking to maintain and strengthen their relationship with the media and provide a seamless transition from outdated radio-based scanning to providing secure and efficient information via the web.

Further, ESTA and E-VIS Pty Ltd have built a system that can evolve with the changing needs of emergency service organisations and the media.

Date of project: August 2006

Agency: Emergency Services Telecommunications Authority (ESTA)

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Peercore ERP integrates with DocBureau

Peerless Foods has implemented this new feature into their Accounts Payable department. Peerless Foods decision has streamlined the processing of invoicing.

Mr Brian Amit, Peerless Foods IT Manager said “this is the first step to achieving a paperless office and we plan to scanning other document types in the near future.”

Accounts payable invoices are scanned into DocBureau and linked to Peercore ERP. Invoices are viewable directly from Peercore. Removing the need to photocopy and distribute the invoices for approval.

Scanned invoices are destroyed, removing the need for filing.

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e-Government Award 2006

Hobsons Bay City Council received a High Commendation for their use of Greenlight OPM at the inaugural e-Government Award Ceremony. Thirty-five nominations were received across all levels of government for the prestigious e-Government award, which recognises and rewards successful and outstanding projects in e-Government in Australia.

Description

With a decreasing supply of qualified and experienced planners, Hobsons Bay City Council in Melbourne embarked on a process to improve the town planning process.

Its aim was to improve efficiencies, reduce delays, increase transparency and create a more user-friendly environment for everyone involved in the process.

Following eight months of design and development, the council unveiled its Greenlight Online Permit Manager—Australia’s first fully integrated online town planning permit management system. Greenlight provides an alternative to the paper trail usually associated with town planning applications, enabling residents, developers and others to submit applications online at any time and track the entire process right through to the final approval.

This state-of-the-art software was specifically designed and developed by and for local government planning departments and covers the entire town planning process.

Features

Developed in partnership with software developer E-vis Pty Limited, Greenlight has fully automated the traditionally bureaucratic town planning process. It enables planning permit and subdivision applications, general enquiries, enforcement matters, liquor licensing, appeals and even planning scheme amendment requests to be done online.

The system allows for anyone to use it 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, rather than being limited to the traditional council operating hours of 9.00am to 5.00pm, Monday to Friday. Whether it is to lodge an application, respond to a referral, check the status of an application, lodge an objection or view a set of plans for a neighbouring development, Greenlight allows residents and other stakeholders to access information at a time that is convenient to them. This is particularly important, given that 30 to 40 per cent of such activity is done outside of normal business hours.

Greenlight automatically creates a range of documents, such as letters, permits, referrals correspondence and reports. Further, it automatically indexes and stores documents, providing a full audit trail, and allows information to be shared among different departments within the council.

Greenlight is unique in that each and every component of the software package was designed and developed by the people directly involved in these everyday processes. Cashiers, customer service officers, records, information technology staff, administrative officers, statutory and strategic planners, enforcement officers, privacy officers and internal and external referral agencies were all asked to contribute to the development of the software.

Outcomes

Greenlight Online Permit Manager is cost effective, reliable and, most importantly, saves time for everyone involved—from residents to the CEO. Compared to the previously paper-based process, Greenlight has improved service delivery to residents and transformed the council’s town planning process. Approximately 20 per cent of permits are now lodged online and approximately 40 per cent of all permit processing is now done via the internet.

For residents and other stakeholders, Greenlight means that the days of having to contact or travel to council during working hours are over. They can go online at any time to lodge planning applications or undertake a range of associated tasks, such as asking for advice, viewing plans, searching for applications of interest in their area or lodging a complaint about a planning matter. And once an application is lodged online, customers can log in and follow their application’s progression.

From the council’s perspective, Greenlight has provided an innovative solution to a number of issues confronting local governments, including more efficient and effective processing, resource savings, and a more transparent and accessible service. In the first 18 months of use, Greenlight has been reaping returns in a number of areas.

More efficient and effective processing has reduced the median time taken by the council to complete an application—from 88 days (in 2003–04) to 34 days (in 2004–05), which is well below the regulatory requirement of 60 days.

Automated processing and document creation have reduced the incidence of human error (reduced risk), increased productivity, and produce better decisions as a result of increased time to review and assess applications. In fact, Hobsons Bay City Council is the only council in Victoria to have received a perfect score from its risk insurers, CMP.

This automation has streamlined planning and cut down on lengthy administrative processes, allowing planners to spend the bulk of their time on the expert task of assessing applications, rather than doing administrative tasks.

A positive outcome of the decreasing demand on planning resources is that the council can redeploy customer service and other related staff to other work.

The online system has also increased the council’s planning information management compliance to 100 per cent. All 15 000 documents created by Greenlight during 2004–05 were automatically indexed and stored, with a full audit trail. Greenlight allows for improved documentation and information management as everything is online in the one area and the system enables data to be shared among other departments in the council.

The automated features of Greenlight, combined with systems online capabilities, have provided a significant return on investment, leading to direct savings in:

  • records management—less processing requirements, storage and retrieval, postage and handling (35 per cent of all Greenlight correspondence is electronic);
  • phone enquiries and counter enquiries—reduced substantially as people can now look at plans online, without having to phone or come into council offices during business hours;
  • photocopying—reduced by 40 per cent as documents are lodged, received and distributed electronically; and
  • technical support—reduced technical support and overheads through hosted solutions.

These outcomes have also led to environmental benefits.

Finally, enabling developers and residents to submit applications online at any time and track the entire process right through to the final approval has resulted in a more transparent and accessible service.

Overall, the Greenlight Online Permit Manager has been an overwhelming success across the organisation and has been well received by the development industry and residents alike.

Future directions and lessons learnt

Following the success of online town planning, the council is working on introducing similar processes for other council services, including building approvals, local laws and environmental health.

Macedon Ranges Shire Council and Moira Shire Council have recently purchased the Greenlight Online Permit Manager, and several other Victorian and interstate councils are reviewing the system as an opportunity to improve their planning processes.

The project has proven that local government is a dynamic industry that is supported by enthusiastic and creative officers wanting to make a positive impact on their local communities.

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Greenlight for Macedon Ranges Shire Council

E-VIS would like to welcome Macedon Ranges Shire Council as the newest user of our award winning planning software, Greenlight Online Planning Manager. The system will streamline Macedon's town planning processes and provide planning services to the community via the Councils website, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

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DOTARS LG Awards 2005

Greenlight Online Planning Manager has received further industry recognition as the leading Council planning solution at the 2005 DOTARS National Awards for Local Government. Greenlight OPM, received a Commendation Award in the Information Technology category, with the system selected from amongst 280 entries for the honour.

E-VIS’ flagship planning software, Greenlight Online Planning Manager, has received further industry recognition as the leading Council planning solution at the 2005 National Awards for Local Government. Hobsons Bay City Council, the pilot Council and co-developer of Greenlight OPM, received a Commendation Award from Minister for Local Government, Territories and Roads, Jim Lloyd, in the category of Information Technology. The Council were selected from amongst 280 entries for the commendation which recognises the vast improvements and innovations that have been shown by their use of Greenlight Online Planning Manager.

Minister Lloyd recognised the significance of the achievements of Greenlight OPM in a letter to Hobsons Bay.

“The National Awards for Local Government highlight outstanding achievements in local government. They recognise council’s resourcefulness, and reward councils for finding better ways of delivering services and developing local solutions to often complex and challenging problems.”

“Congratulations on your wonderful achievement”

In addition to the award, Hobsons Bay and Greenlight OPM will now be featured in the 2005 National Awards for Local Government Winners Supplement Booklet and in the Guide to Leading Practice, an interactive, searchable database hosted on the Department of Transport and Regional services website.

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COUNCIL CLEANS UP AT PLANNING AWARDS

Greenlight OPM has won Hobsons Bay City Council yet another local government award. Hobsons Bay 's provision of Greenlight OPM to residents and developers saw the Council win the Service Delivery Initiative Category at the LGPRO 2005 Awards for Excellence. The LGPRO awards are intended to highlight innovative and efficient services offered by Councils and the role they play in strengthening the community.

Hobsons Bay City Council took out two major awards at the Planning Institute of Australia’s (PIA) annual awards last Friday, 19 November, at Federation Square.

The PIA Awards, which acknowledge excellence, innovation and achievement in urban and regional fields, are judged by peers in the town-planning field.

Nominated alongside other councils and privately operated planning companies, Hobsons Bay City Council won the Victorian Division Planning Excellence Award for its newly installed online planning system, “Greenlight”; and Council’s Urban Planner, Rhiannon Murrell, shared the Young Planner of the Year Award with a senior planner from the private sector.

Murrell has been employed with Council since July 2002 and has completed a Bachelor of Applied Science with RMIT University. A young planner, dealing with complex applications, she has experienced the benefits of Greenlight first hand.

Since its launch in May, Greenlight has transformed the planning process for Hobsons Bay planners, residents and developers with more than 30 per cent of customer interactions now conducted online.

The award winning system has allowed for a faster and more convenient planning process. The average planning permit processing time has been reduced by 25 days and a third of enquiries, lodgements and submissions lodged online are made outside Council office hours.

Hobsons Bay City Council planning staff have also noted a significant decrease in the number of incomplete applications received. Seen as the main cause of delays, this is a big win for the Council and applicants alike.

GreenLight has been a welcome addition to the Hobsons Bay City Council service portfolio.

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